[Pigging by Wilfrid: December 21, 2017]
I didn't have a plan to eat at Tim Love's Lonesome Dove. It just hadn't occurred to me. I knew his work, of course (I'd even filmed with him--see below), but I'd missed his stumble in New York, where a version of Lonesome Dove earned zero stars from the New York Times.
And then I just kind of stumbled on it one night, looking for cocktails at the nearby Roosevelt Room. I passed it again the next night, and so I looked in the windows, looked at the menu, and started thinking about it.
I'm glad I did, because it was one of the best restaurant meals I ate in the second half of 2017. Everyone inside seemed to be having a good time, the dining room looked smart, hung with huge chandeliers, and I liked the modern-Western sleekness of the single-story building. The menu sealed the deal: with that selection of wild game, there had to be something I'd enjoy.
But who knew I'd enjoy rabbit-rattlesnake sausage so much? Served on manchego rösti and dabbed with crème fraîche, the sausage--40% snake--didn't taste like chicken. If anything, it had a sort of frog tang to it. Quite delicious.
I'd also ordered antelope carpaccio which came on nachos balanced on an excellent avocado salsa. Very food too, but overshadowed by the sausage (there's a kangaroo carpaccio on the current menu, which sounds like a great idea).
Nothing wrong with the furnishings. Wine by the glass came in big, Texas pours. The bread basket? The biscuit was a little too crumbly, but there was spicy cornbread and something called milk bread which looked like a polished croissant.
The elk loin sealed the deal. I've eaten elk before, notably in Louisiana, and this was the best I've ever had. Remarkably tender, full-flavored, cooked appropriately rare. This is why people get excited about game meats.